Mads Mikkelsen has more than proven himself to be a massively talented, versatile and popular actor, with those calls to see a network or streaming service renew Hannibal for a fourth season still going strong almost six and a half years after it was originally canceled by NBC, but he still wasn’t immune from Fantastic Beasts backlash.
99% of the time, fans would be thrilled to hear that Mikkelsen had signed on to play the villain in a blockbuster franchise, but he’s not Johnny Depp, so people weren’t happy. Such is the body of work he’s built up over the last two decades, it’s easy to forget that the actor only made his first Hollywood movie seventeen years ago, even though his onscreen debut came in 1996.
That project was Antoine Fuqua’s King Arthur, which arrived a little too late to the post-Gladiator historical epic boom, and under-performed as a result. The gritty re-telling of the legend earned $203 million at the box office on a $120 million budget and wound up with a 31% Rotten Tomatoes score, so it was mediocrity all-round.
The impressive cast boasts Mikkelsen, future Hannibal co-star Hugh Dancy, Clive Owen, Keira Knightley, Joel Edgerton, Ray Winstone, Stellan Skarsgard and more, yet it’s a bit of slog. The action is about as brutal as you’d expect to find in a PG-13 blockbuster, but some levity could have really gone a long way in the relentlessly self-serious film. Surprisingly, the old school bruiser has been making waves on Disney Plus as per FlixPatrol, where it’s on the cusp of cracking the Top 20 most-watched list.